The Effects of the Pandemic on Mental Health

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I’m sure many of you agree that living in the 21st century is stressful enough on our mental health, without a worldwide pandemic. As technology advances, there are more demands on us to be available 24/7, and to be know what tone of voice the sender is using in a text message to us. This alone can cause ructions, because so often messages are misconstrued because they’re only written, rather than spoken. Added to that are countless Zoom meetings and e-mails.

In some countries, parents have the added responsibility of schooling their children; a task that they’re not officially qualified to do, on top of still doing their job and managing their home to be a safe environment for the family.

These are a few less dire points that came to mind. There are hundreds, if not thousands more serious factors that contribute to a deterioration in mental health, especially in a pandemic; many people have lost their incomes, victims of child- and domestic abuse have been exposed to the perpetrators of the violence for longer periods of time, sometimes with fatal consequences, and according to statistics, more people are having suicidal thoughts.

The global health system is taking strain. Doctors and nurses are exhausted from working almost round the clock to treat patients, often having to weigh up a balance of two lives in their hands; who gets to be on a ventilator vs who doesn’t? They live in a state of constant concern for their families: what if they’ve been unwittingly exposed to the Coronavirus and infect their spouse or children.

In the instances listed above, there is one aspect that can certainly lighten the emotional load: talk therapy. Speaking to a mental health expert, such as a counsellor from Bristol Counselling and Psychotherapy may be all that you need. Counsellors and psychotherapists are trained to equip their patients with ways in which to address mental health issues they face. In some cultures, or certain generation, a perception exists that speaking to a mental health professional is shameful, a waste of time and money, or that you’re mentally unstable to the point of being beyond help. This is not true! There are numerous advantages to discussing the problems you face with a counsellor, such as:

  • Full privacy. What you say remains confidential.
  • A safe space in which to share all your feelings, without fear of judgement or reproach.
  • Establishing patterns or habits that may be negatively impacting your mental wellbeing, in which case, your counsellor can help you work on a plan to bright about positive changes.

Increased stress levels can lead to ailments like insomnia, changes in your personal relationships, and even eating disorders. Talk therapy can assist in the resolution of these problems too. Remember, your mental health counsellor is an impartial party, who is equipped to help you be a happy, healthier version of yourself. Don’t be ashamed to get the help you need; especially in these challenging times.